A committee in the Kansas House has advanced a plan to balance the current fiscal year’s budget. The bill transfers money from sources like the state highway fund, and makes other changes, to help fill a budget hole. But as KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, lawmakers decided not to take as much as originally planned from a fund for kids’ programs.
The original plan took all $14 million out of the Kansas Endowment for Youth to help close the state’s budget gap, but lawmakers amended that to leave $2.5 million in the fund.
Shannon Cotsoradis, with the group Kansas Action for Children, says that’s not a big victory. She says, however, it will provide a buffer if an upcoming April funding payment is less than planned.
“There's no program growth going on, most of these programs have been flat funded for eight years of more. So this isn’t about growth, this is about staving off a potential crisis come April if the check comes in short,” says Cotsoradis.
The money for the fund comes from a tobacco lawsuit settlement from the 1990s. The legislation will next go before the full House.